One way of building and extending flavor is through the use of stocks. But let me say right away that, on a daily basis, I’d rather make a dish that doesn’t need a stock; because, like you, I’m busy. Still, stocks don’t have to be especially time-consuming.
My most frequent approach is the quick stock—a thin stock based on the trimmings of the vegetables used in a soup or whatever dish I’m making, plus maybe a bay leaf or other appropriate herb.
It’s a stock that cooks in 25 minutes at most. It doesn’t have the quality of a broth, but it does underscore the flavors already being featured in a dish.
I’ve seen chef’s recipes that really break the bank, calling for many very expensive vegetables for a few cups of stock. I’m sure it’s delicious, but that’s not my general intent. I tend to make a stock that merely reflects the ingredients in the dish it will be used in.
Here are a few general tips for making stocks:
This article is brought to you by Ten Speed Press. Reprinted and adapted with permission from In My Kitchen by Deborah Madison, 2017. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.